If you’re planning a family trip, one with a little bit of adventure, South America is where you want to go! Spanning 625 miles from end to end, with mountainous landscapes, volcanoes, rainforests, treacherous hikes and even wineries in between, this diverse continent promises a little something for everyone.
Need some South America travel ideas for you and your family to do once you get there? That’s where we come in. Read below for some South American adventure fun for the whole family.
Forget the zoo! The Pantanal is the world's largest tropical wetland, has the highest concentration of wildlife on the continent, and is one of Brazil’s best hidden gems. Sprawling 70,000+ square miles, and sitting right in the middle of South America, this site is part national park, part UNESCO World Heritage site. Here, family members can see more than 1,000 kinds of birds and 300 different mammals, including jaguars, giant anteaters, howler, wild pigs, deer and so much more.
If Bolivia isn’t on your list of South America travel ideas, it should be. In a country known for its out-of-this-world landscapes, it’s the perfect place to caravan. Start at its famed Salar de Uyuni salt flats, and make your way through Valle de las Ánimas, Illimani, Lake Titicaca, the part of the Amazon in Rurrenabaque, Moon Valley, and the hot springs in Sajama National Park. There’s so much to see in Bolivia that you won’t know where to stop exploring.
Everyone goes to Ecuador and heads straight for the Galapagos, but the country’s mainland has plenty to see, too. From guided rainforest hikes and kayaking down the Napo River—home of the pink river dolphin—to hiking the world’s third-tallest active volcano (the Cotopaxi) and Baños de Agua Santa’s canyoneering, bridge jumping, climbing waterfalls, white-water rafting and horseback riding, the adventure never ends. On top of that, teenage children will love Montañita! Designed for the hippy at heart, this bohemian beach town in Ecuador is known for its intense surf breaks.
Want to see Chile’s lakes and volcanoes up close? Bike right through them! Grab the kids and see the best Chile has to offer as you pedal past glacier lakes, down the famous “Seven Lake Route” and through its sprawling vineyards. If your children are too small to ride, opt for a bike with a bike seat, or rent them a tricycle. You don’t need to go fast here; trust us, you’ll want to take in those views.